ArenaNet previews the new PvP map, called Spirit Watch, that is coming in the February content patch.
ArenaNet revealed last week that there would be a new PvP map called Spirit Watch coming in the February content patch. Today, they released a blog post previewing the new map and it's secondary mechanic. The map has a very Norn theme, with statues of the spirits of the wild overlooking the conquest nodes that are part of every PvP map in Guild Wars 2. The secondary mechanic however, adds a capture-the-flag twist to the map.
At the beginning of each map, an Orb of Ascension spawns atop its altar located in the middle of the map. Players can commune with the altar to pick up the orb. Now this orb won't prevent players from using their normal skills, but it will put a 40% movement speed penalty on the player as well as preventing them from stealthing or gain swiftness. Also, if the player who is carrying the orb teleports or is downed the orb will drop at their feet.
Unlike traditional capture-the-flag in other games, players can return the orb to any of the conquest nodes to gain bonus points, but the effects of the capture changes depending on who owns the node. If a player returns it to a node controlled by their team then the team will gain 30 bonus points. If the node is neutral they will only gain 15 points. However, taking the orb to an enemy controlled node will immediately neutralize the node and give the team 15 bonus points.
After an orb is scored it respawns at its altar after 10 seconds. We shall see when we get our hands on it, but this could mean we see some very quick matches. Speaking of seeing, as part of the article ArenaNet also released a short fly through of the map.
Matt "Mattsta" Adams